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India needs to enact a COVID-19 law

India needs to enact a COVID-19 law By, Manuraj Shunmugasundaram is an advocate at the Madras High Court, and spokesperson, DMK Introduction The nationwide lockdown has been central to the government’s strategy to combat the COVID-19 pandemic. With businesses closed, supply chains disrupted, timelines extended and contracts terminated, this exercise has caused the organised sector unprecedented economic losses. In the unorganised sector, there has been a complete breakdown wit

Dilution of labour laws- Factories(Amendment) Bill,2014

Dilution of labour laws Introduction At a time when everyone is awaiting an early end to the health and economic crisis caused by the global pandemic, the interests of labourers and workers are once again set to be sacrificed.   Labour Jurisdiction   Under the Constitution of India, Labour is a subject in the Concurrent List where both the Central & State Governments are competent to enact legislation subject to certain matters being res

Coronavirus lockdown | How can inter-State workers be protected?

Introduction The nationwide lockdown announced on March 24 at short notice has caused immense distress to migrant workers around the country. Hundreds have been seen trying to walk home to Uttar Pradesh, Bihar, West Bengal and Odisha from their places of work. On Friday, May 8, 16 migrant labourers who were trying to return to Madhya Pradesh, their home State, on foot were killed when a goods train ran over them. Questions are being raised about their welfare and the lack of legal prot

RERA Act,2016

RERA Act,2016 Objectives of RERA Enhance transparency and accountability in real estate and housing transactions. Boost domestic and foreign investment in the real estate sector. Provide uniform regulatory environment to ensure speedy adjudication of disputes. Promote orderly growth through efficient project execution and standardization. Offer single window system of clearance for real estate projects. Empower and protect the right of home buyers. Provisions Establis

India’s Parliament is missing in action

India’s Parliament is missing in action By, M.R. Madhavan is President of the PRS Legislative Research, New Delhi Introduction Parliaments in democracies around the world are meeting and questioning their governments on their responses to the COVID-19 pandemic. Examples of different Parliaments of the world who conducted meetings through video conferencing # The Canadian Parliament had its first lockdown meeting towards the end of April, with roughly 280 of the 338 Members

Motor Vehicles (Amendment) Act, 2019

Suggestions invited for amending Motor Vehicle Rules for facilitating MOUs with neighbouring countries involving movement of passenger or goods vehicles Context Ministry of Road Transport and Highways has invited suggestions and comments from all stake holders including general public on the proposed amendment in the Motor Vehicle Draft rules for facilitating MOUs with neighbouring countries involving movement of passenger or goods vehicles. About Motor Vehicles (Amendment) Act, 2019

Right to Information Act,2005

Right to Information Act,2005 Historical Background The right to information gained power when Universal Declaration of Human Rights was adopted in 1948 providing everyone the right to seek, receive, information and ideas through any media and regardless of frontiers. The International Covenant on Civil and Political rights 1966 states that everyone shall have the right to freedom of expression, the freedom to seek and impart information and ideas of all kinds. A

Reform with caution: On criminal laws reform

Reform with caution: On criminal laws reform Context * The formation of a ‘Committee for the Reform of Criminal Laws’(Ranbir Singh) by the Union Home Ministry with an apparently short time frame and limited scope for public consultation has caused considerable disquiet among jurists, lawyers and those concerned with the state of criminal justice in the country.   Lack of consensus * Few would disagree with the idea that the current laws governing crime, investiga

Committee on Criminal Law Reform

Committee on Criminal Law Reform The committee has been constituted under Ranbir Singh and several other members. The committee would be gathering opinions online by consulting with experts and collating material for their report to the government. The consultation exercise would start on 4th July 2020 and go on for the next three months. Background of Criminal Justice System: The codification of criminal laws in India was done during the British rule, which more or less rem

Right by birth

Right by birth Context: Supreme Court observations regarding the provisions of the Hindu Succession (Amendment) Act, 2005. Mitakshara law: Mitakshara is one of the schools belonging to Hindu law dealing with property rights and succession. Mitakshara law is still in practice across most of India except for West Bengal and Assam where the Dayabhaga system is practiced. The Mitakshara is a legal treatise on inheritance, written by Vijnaneshwara, a scholar in the Western Chaluky

What was the 2005 amendment to Hindu Sucession Act,1956?

Decoding the SC verdict on right of daughters What was the 2005 amendment to Hindu Sucession Act,1956? The amendment was passed in 2005 to confer equal status to both sons and daughters of coparceners. Prior to the amendment, coparcenary rights were granted only to sons of a coparcener. Who is a coparcener? A coparcener is one who acquires rights to their father’s property upon birth and can claim a partition of the coparcenary at any time. What was the confusion a

Minimum Age of Marriage for Girls

Minimum Age of Marriage for Girls Context The Prime Minister, during his address to the nation on the 74th Independence Day, announced that the central government has set up a committee to reconsider the minimum age of marriage for women, which is currently 18. About the Committee (Jaya Jaitley Committee): On 2nd June 2020, the Union Ministry for Women and Child Development set up a committee to examine matters pertaining to age of motherhood, imperatives of lowering Maternal


RTI on PM-CARES Fund Context The Prime Minister’s Office (PMO) has denied a Right to Information request related to the Prime Minister’s Citizen Assistance and Relief in Emergency Situations Fund (PM-CARES Fund). News: The PMO denied information on the number of applications and appeals related to PM-CARES and the Prime Minister’s National Relief Fund. The information was denied by the PMO on the grounds that providing it would “disproportionately di

Making the language of the law comprehensible

Making the language of the law comprehensible Context: A plea was filed by the citizens who protested against the publication of the draft EIA notification in only English and Hindi, on the grounds that such a policy excludes a large number of Indians who do not speak Hindi or English from participating in the public consultation process. They demanded that the draft be published in 22 Indian Languages. This issue has brought much-needed attention to the issue of official languages

For the welfare of animals

For the welfare of animals Introduction: Over the last one year, India has seen multiple instances of animals being subjected to sexual abuse, acid attacks, being thrown off rooftops, and being burnt alive. A major factor that enables such violence is an inept legal framework in the country to prevent cruelty to animals. Issues: 1. Paltry fine: The Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (PCA) Act, 1960 punishes the most serious forms of animal violence with a meagre fine of ?5

Impediments to equal productivity, dignity

Impediments to equal productivity, dignity Introduction: As a disabled person inhabiting a world designed for the able-bodied, one learns to put up with a lot of indignities that others would consider unacceptable. The everyday pain of being excluded from a whole host of normal life activities, and the challenge of having to constantly find ways of living with equal productivity and dignity as others which the able-bodied often simply do not have to think about. Issues of PWD:


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